I'm planning on entering into the software/web development field and would like to pursue either Computer Science or Computer Engineering as a major when I go to college (within the year). Before that, though, I would like to develop skills in the related fields and sub-fields. So that brings me to my question -- is elementary OS good for programming beginners? And if so, is there any links I can follow that'll tell me the best apps and ways to get started? A bit of a silly question for sure, but just wondering. Thanks!

2 Answers 2


I made the switch from macOS to elementary OS a few months back because I am bit tired of Apple's ways (a different rant) and if anything improved my development workflow. I thought I would have to give up some of the niceties of my Macbook Pro and macOS but that hasn't been the case. I am a full-stack web developer using JavaScript front-end and back-end frameworks as well as Ruby on Rails. I run both my Node.js and Rails backend API's in Docker containers and everything works perfectly. Some of the applications I user are Git, Visual Studio Code (code editor), Postman (REST API testing), GIMP, Inkscape, & Figma. I didn't find anything to be difficult to install and configure.

The only thing I can't do is iOS development which I don't do often so I have an older Mac Mini that I do that on.

Good luck and ask questions if you need help!


I'd say elementary OS is as good as any other flavor of Linux for learning programming. You can install many different compilers and interpreters. Python should already be installed. I think gcc for C programming is also pre-installed.

There are many good IDEs to choose from: PyCharm, Atom, Visual Studio Code, Sublime Text, or even Geany. Microsoft's Visual Studio is an industry standard IDE. Of course there is also Code, which is elementary OS's own coding environment that comes pre-installed.

Just my opinion. I'm sure others will share theirs.

  • Hey, thanks for the response! Sounds great. I may seek additional input here just for more responses, but that definitely does give me some piece of mind. I appreciate it! I'll check it out through VB and see how I like it—I'll more than likely download it on a couple devices so I can work with it and figure it out better before I deep dive into it; then I'll try to find some sort of programming sources for beginners to get started. Thank you!
    – jdford
    Commented Feb 3, 2020 at 23:07

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